After the Maryland wrestling team's loss to then-No. 12 Rutgers in early November, coach Kerry McCoy said that his team would need to beat opponents "that we're not supposed to beat." In three matches against ranked opponents entering Friday's dual match against No. 2 Ohio State, the Terps failed to earn a win.
That skid continued in College Park against the 2017 championship runner-ups. The Buckeyes, who had wins in all but one of their previous 10 dual matches, were dominant from the outset. Two technical falls and a major decision win for Ohio State (7-0, 2-0 Big Ten) was enough to help the Buckeyes secure their seventh win this season, a 45-3 rout of Maryland.
"Not happy with the result," McCoy said. "Our guys did a pretty good job of metering expectations. When it comes down [to it], they're pretty good. We have to take our level up a little bit."
Maryland (3-5, 0-5) appeared outmatched seconds into the first bout, when No. 1 Nathan Tomasello took control in an 18-2 technical fall victory against 125-pound Brandon Cray. Tomasello, an NCAA champion and three-time All-American ranked No. 1, hadn't wrestled this season due to a knee injury but convincingly topped Cray in his first action of the year.
It was Cray's eighth loss this season, seemingly setting the tone for the remainder of the meet.
No. 6-ranked Joey McKenna secured a technical fall over 141-pounder Ryan Diehl to push Ohio State's lead to 14. Terps 149-pounder Alfred Bannister fell to No. 5 Ke-Shawn Hayes, 7-0, in the most competitive bout of the first half.
In the 157-pound bout, Justin Alexander suffered an apparent head injury after No. 6 Micah Jordan boasted a two-point lead. Jordan earned a win as a result of the medical forfeit, giving the Buckeyes a 23-0 edge at the intermission.
Despite a promising 165-pound bout that remained close in the third round before No. 11 Te'Shan Campbell beat Brendan Burnham 7-2, Maryland was plagued by another injury in the 174-pound round. Josh Ugalde departed for the locker room with what seemed to be a knee injury. As a result, the Terps had to forfeit a second matchup.
Following consecutive Ohio State pins, heavyweight Youssif Hemida topped Kevin Snyder, one of just two unranked Buckeyes that wrestled Friday, in the final bout. His 8-1 victory prevented the Terps from being shut out for the first time this season.
Still, McCoy's squad is left searching for a win against a ranked team and its first conference victory with a matchup against Nebraska looming Sunday.
"We got beat pretty bad," Hemida said. "It kind of stinks a little bit."
CORRECTION: Due to an editing error, a previous version of this article incorrectly stated Hemida beat Snyder 7-1. Hemida's margin of victory was 8-1. This story has been updated.